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Video Game / Tears to Tiara 2

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"I'm your goddess Astarte."

The Story of the Lost Goddess and the Overlord

The sequel to Tears to Tiara by Aquaplus, Tears to Tiara II: Heir of the Overlordnote  is a 2013 PS3 Turn-Based Strategy game that follows the style of the Tears to Tiara PS3 port. It follows a similar style of mixing mythology with Roman history, this time mixing Phoenician Mythology with the Punic Wars.

Atlus released the English localization in North America on October 14th, 2014. It was released in Europe by NIS America on November 7th.

The period is some time in the near future after the events of the first game. In the town of Tamar in central Hispania, the Canaanites are being oppressed by the Divine Empire. They are heavily taxed, treated as slaves, and forced to use stones from their temple to build a new church to the Almighty Watos. All because the previous governor of Hispania, Hasdrubal Barca, had revolted against the empire seven years ago and failed.

Hamilcar "Hamil" Barca, son of Hasdrubal, is now leader of the Canaanites. However he is dumb, has no skills in magic or sword, and willingly allows imperial soldiers to beat him and laugh at him. All of the Canaanites are disappointed at their leader, and the Divine Empire thinks he's a joke. Behind the scenes, The Barca Faction are planning a rebellion. Unbeknownst to everyone, Hamil is an incredibly cunning youth. He wishes to prevent a rebellion at all costs, and does it by playing dumb. He hears the cry of a girl and finds her somehow having tangled her foot underneath the roots of a tree. She calls herself the goddess of harvest and war Astarte, but is unable to use any magic, to her surprise.

Hamil realizes a rebellion is planned, and on the way home that day harshly gets Tarte to leave town to prevent her being persecuted by The Divine Order for calling herself a goddess. He is then approached by Zaras who plan on using him to bait out and destroy the Barcid party. Hamil continues to play dumb and goes along with Zaras' plans in order to prevent the destruction of war falling on Hispania.

At the festival, Zaras unveils a surprise. Tarte has been captured and is about to be burnt at the stake for calling herself a goddess. For seven years, Hamil has prepared for this Ba'al festival. He is prepared to die and sacrifice the entire Barca Faction if it meant preventing a rebellion. But with Tarte unconscious, about to be burnt alive before him, Hamil breaks the facade, gives into his anger, and summons forth the God of War Melqart.

The rebellion has begun.

This series provides examples of:

  • Anguished Declaration of Love:
    • Elissa as she interrupts Daphnis' attempt at Heroic Sacrifice.
    • Hamil and Tarte take turns declaring their love for each other as Melqart's Blood Lust begins to take over Hamil.
  • Anti-Grinding: You get less experience against units of increasing lower level. But that doesn't stop "Apple Throwing". And then there's also the overlevel penalty to consider where characters cannot be overleveled compared to the highest leveled enemy on the field.
  • Arranged Marriage: Hanno tries to arrange one between Elissa and Hamil to cement an alliance, as she would be both a wife and a hostage. Both sides ends up backing down. Elissa joins the party to act as a hostage and combatant to cement the alliance instead.
  • A Taste of Power: The beginning of the game has Hamil transformed into a level 99 Melqart. Awesomeness ensues.
  • Asskicking Leads to Leadership: There's a good reason the House of Barca rules Hispania and leads the Canaanites.
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning:
    • Tarte crowns Hamil as Hero-King of Hispania at the conclusion of Chapter 6. With a Tiara of Wheat for Hamil and a Tiara of Flower for herself.
    • Though not a traditional crowning, at the end the signal flares from the remaining legions of The Empire show they acknowledge Hamil's Imperium as the new ruler of the Hegemonic Empire
  • Back-to-Back Badasses: Monomachus and Enneads in the opening movie.
  • Barbarian Tribe: The Empire regards them as dirt. Saul says they are aren't so different and tries to co-exist.
  • Batman Gambit: Izebel's plan for the Tartessos campaign. It requires both Hamil and Laelius to act exactly as she planned. And they do, because they both believe very strongly in protecting the innocent. And in the case of Hamil because he told her all his battle plans when he was a young child before he lost his memories.
  • The Battle Didn't Count: Before your final encounter with them, battles with Izebel and/or Laelius always have a timed survival or some form of escape as the winning condition, with defeating them being a bonus option. But no matter whether or not you defeat them, the story always pretend you took the escape option.
  • Belief Makes You Stupid:
    • Justified. The Divine Order is actively repressing all non-religious knowledge.
    • Izebel comments to herself that Laelius, a knight of The Empire bent on restoring the Glory Days, does not know that during said days the common soldiers of the empire was responsible for most of the construction and would have been perfectly able of reconstructing a stone arch bridge.
  • BFS: The Greatsword of Tanit. Tarte probably wouldn't be able to even lift it if she wasn't the Goddess of War.
  • Big Damn Heroes: The slaves and gladiators are on the ropes, unable to break through the Praetorians standing between them and the Alps and about to be wiped out. Just then, Hamil and Tarte, leading the entire alliance burst through the glaciers behind the Praetorians and saves the day.
  • "Blind Idiot" Translation: Atlus' translation is full of it. Special mention goes to...
    • Having Hamil say he won't become Melqart during his pact with Tarte, when everything pointed to him saying he will.
    • Translating gundan, a military formation of 20k to 30k men, as platoon, a group of 15 to 30 men.
    • Turning Izebel's rant at Hasdrubal about the foolishness of people into a rant about the foolishness of Hasdrubal.
  • Book Burning: Mentioned as part of the Millenijanus plan.
  • Book Ends:
    • The story starts and ends with Divine Intervention.
    • Chapter 1 and Chapter 12 both ends with lots of signal flares communicating victory appearing as brilliant fireworks.
  • Break the Cutie: Izebel. And you don't learn her story until Hamil fatally runs her through with his sword.
  • Brutal Bonus Level: Hypogeum. Hard even with everyone at level 99.
  • Call-Back: The Ba'al gods are powerless without people's worship is brought up in Chapter 1. It comes back to save Tarte's life in the ending.
  • Call to Agriculture: Monomachus, though he didn't let Hamil know until he died. Hamil's Aura Project is part this, though he prefers traveling.
  • The Cavalry: Tarte summons one in the form of Elven elephants and Taros.
  • The Chains of Commanding:
    • In the beginning Hamil is clearly unable to bear the pressure of command any longer, though he only shows it to Tarte and Tanit. They both say they'll help carry the burden.
    • Eshmun, Hamil's past self, was completely crushed by the responsibility and let Melqart take over completely because Tarte couldn't be there.
  • Character Development: Hamil. From questioning his choice to rebel and being crushed by The Chains of Commanding, to a confident leader set on creating a good Hegemonic Empire.
  • Chekhov's Gag: Tarte trying to gain worshipers, usually with Kleito teasing her over Hamil. Tarte is trying to gain worshipers to wake up her clan, the rest of the Ba'al gods. She succeeds and in the climax the Ba'al gods saves her life.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Golyat first show up commanding his legions to crush Hispania's rebellion. As he retreats, Hamil offers him land grants for his veterans if he switch sides, something The Empire did in its heyday. He admits the offer is very enticing but it's too late and they'll loose. Fast forward to the final approach on Alba Longa, as the party wonder if any of The Empire's legions will switch sides, they find him having already put the city under siege and is waiting for them.
  • The Chessmaster: Several in the storyline. The story's heavily based on the Punic Wars, what did you expect ?
  • Demonic Possession:
    • Metatronius processes Abraxas to break his seal and resume heaven's original plan to turn humans into helpless praying idiots.
    • Hamil came close to being possessed by Melqart.
  • The Fundamentalist: Obviously since we have Religious Knight Templar from a Theocracy.
    • Also discussed. Monomachus suggests drumming up religious fervor to turn the entire thing into a war of religion to solve their manpower shortage, with the people of Hispania warshipping Astarte and the Ba'al gods fighting against The Empire who worship Watos. Despite frequently voicing her desire for followers, Tarte says she will not go along with the plan, as people so forced and/or brainwashed are not true believers. Hamil agrees, and decides to form The Alliance to solve their manpower shortage.
  • Gender Reveal: Starts when Daphnis lies to the slavers that he's a girl to give Elissa a chance of escape. Elissa stands up and reveals that Daphnis is a guy, while she's the girl. All the girls of the party follow suit.
  • Giant Spider: Game monster. And then there's the priest of the unnamed village.
  • Girl of My Dreams: Tanit to Hamil. Much to Tart's chagrin.
  • Glory Days: Two. The Canaanites and the people of Hispania under Eshmun. Laelius mentions that The Empire has seen much better days and he's determined to return it to its former glory.
  • God Is Good: The Ba'al and dragons certainly are.
  • Gods Need Prayer Badly: The Ba'al gods do as people's beliefs are the only thing that ties them to earth and prevent them from going into a coma. Tarte at first could not cast even a single heal spell and is no different from a teenage girl because her people are forced by the Divine Empire to worship Watos, and her temples are torn down to build churches. Only by Hamil's desperate pleas for guidance was she even able to take form. Her powers come back to her on the Canaanites' battle cry of Astarte, and prevents both of them from being burnt alive.
  • Good All Along: Izebel. The whole time she was following Hasdrubal's last orders while looking forward to her own death.
  • Good Republic, Evil Empire: Played with a bit. While The Empire is evil, it wasn't until the Divine Church took over. Hamil doesn't really intend on destroying The Empire but return it to what it was. At the end he reinstates the senate as the ruling body, but leads the discussion as the first citizen.
  • Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: Inverted. Daphnis shoots. Elissa smashes.
  • The Heart: Hamil and Tarte are The Heart to the Canaanites, while Charis is The Heart of the party.
  • Heel–Face Turn:
  • Hegemonic Empire: Hamil's Aura Project: to recreate the original Empire by forming a Hegemonic Empire centered around Hispania.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: The major theme of the story is sacrifice.note  So there are lots. Some major ones are:
    • Hadrubal sacrificing his own life to ensure he's son's rebellion in the future will succeed
    • Izebel "killing" the man she loves, enduring the hatred of all her old friends, colleagues, and little-brother figure, and finally loosing her own life to shield Hispania from the worst of The Empire while preparing La Résistance for what's to come.
    • Tarte luring Melqart with her own blood, preparing to die to satisfy Hamil/Melqart's Blood Lust. Hamil will have none of it and runs himself through with his sword to prevent Melqart from taking over and killing Tart.
    • Monomachus and the old Barcid Party stay behind to defend Hispania to buy time for Hamil to take out the Holy Emperor, then lures the Kraken to Tartessos to buy a few more days time for the rest of Hispania, then dies defending Tartessos.
    • Tarte sacrifices herself taking Metatronius' Wave-Motion Gun intended for Hamil
  • Human Resources: Used by The Empire to make Golmes.
  • I Am Spartacus: Inverted. The pirates call for the woman on board to come forth. Daphnis offers himself up, only to have Elissa interrupt, and one by one the actual females on board stand up. And they straight up beat the pirates and takes over the ship, no distraction needed.
  • Ignored Enamored Underling: Izebel. Hasdrubal actually has feelings for her, but wants to follow his late wife's wishes by raising Hamil first.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal:
    • Hamil really just wants to travel. But he never once gives up his responsibility.
    • Turns out, contrary to legend, Eshmun as well.
  • I've Come Too Far: One of two reasons Abraxas turned to the Millenijanus plan. The other is Demonic Possession.
  • Kamehame Hadoken: Kleito shooting the Flames of Creation.
  • Kicking Ass in All Her Finery: Elissa and Daphnis.
  • Kill It with Fire: The Flames of Creation.
  • King Incognito: The party does this to travel to the Rhenus frontiers. There they meet a barbarian fur merchant girl Artio who turns out to be princess of the Suebi.
  • Kiss of Life: Hamil drinks lots of water after their ship sinks. Heal spell has no use and Tarte is getting desperate. Kleito and Charis says he needs proper care, hardening Tart's resolve. Subverted when she gives him a full force punch to his stomach instead.
  • Knight Templar: Members of the Divine Order. Even non-human members.
  • Kraken and Leviathan: Kraken appears in one of the stages as a semi-controlled monster as The Bait in Izebel's plans.
  • Kryptonite Factor: Like the first game, the Gravitas aura from Obelisks.
  • The Leader: Hamil is type I, II, IV, and sometimes III. Really when your character is based on Hannibal Barca, there's no way you're not one.
  • Nintendo Hard: A frequent complaint on the Japanese release is "Easy Mode isn't". It was common enough the developers made a Very Easy Mode. Then Atlus decided to scrape Easy Mode and just renamed Very Easy Mode into the new Easy Mode.
  • "Not So Different" Remark: When discussing the prospects of an alliance with Qart Hadast, Monomachus calls them cowards for abandoning their previous alliance as soon as the war turned against Hispania, and Hanno not a real friend and family because he just sat back and watched Hasdrubal die. Enneads reminds him that they, loyal subordinates, also sat back and watched him die.
  • Obfuscating Insanity: As Hamil is being taken over by Melqart's Blood Lust, he pretends that he's already taken over so that Tarte would kill him before he's taken over and kills her. She sees through it right away and chooses to be eaten alive rather than kill Hamil. This prompts Hamil to try to kill himself in order to save Tarte.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Hamil pretends to be a dumb, unambitious youth lacking any sword skills, magical powers, or will to avenge his father or frees his people. He did this for seven years to prevent a rebellion by the Barcid Party for as long as he could, and at the same time save up enough magic to give Melqart enough power to defeat the imperial army if the rebellion does occur. He throws off the disguise to save Tarte.
  • Our Elves Are Different: The gods of Ba'al are actually powerful elves who lived with humans in ancient times, teaching and guiding them.
  • Our Gods Are Different: Expanded on from the first game. Powerful lineages of the precursor races are worshiped as gods by humans. The people of Hispania mainly, tho not exclusively, worship the gods of Ba'al, of which Astarte is one. They appear on earth to teach and guide the people. They need prayer to be powerful. Watos is still missing.
  • Out-Gambitted: A couple of times Hamil's plans are countered by Izebel as if she knows exactly what he's going to do. She does. He told him before he lost his memories.
  • Plague Master: The King of Death.
  • Precursors: Still around. And the powerful lineages are worshiped as gods by humans.
  • A Protagonist Shall Lead Them: Hamil, the descendent of the Hegemon and the last of the House of Barca.
  • "Pan Up to the Sky" Ending: With a sunrise to mark the return of the Golden Age.
  • Peninsula Of Powerleveling: Buy a lot of apples. Go to the very first area, set the difficulty to Easy Mode, and use the apple all the way. Put it back to Hard mode before finishing the stage (if concerned about the difficulty trophy). Of course, this is prevented by the "overlevel" penalty and preventing getting the S rank at the end of the level, but if players don't care about that one, congratulations: you've just made the main storyline a cakewalk. The real application of this for players who want to play at Hard Mode, is that players only need one character at level 99 while the rest can be at the levels lower than the highest leveled enemy and still get the S Rank at the end of the stage.
  • Proud Merchant Race: The people of Qart Hadast under Hanno.
  • Proud Warrior Race: Canaanites and the Barcid family are this, exemplified by Monomachus. Subverted by Hamilicar Barca, the last of the House of Barca.
  • Recurring Boss: Izebel and Laelius. Izebel is impossible to kill straight up during your first encounter with her on the highest difficulties even with Melqart (though you can still kill her other ways). They both get very gradually easier.
  • Refusal of the Call: Hamil plays dumb to prevent a rebellion, and was willing to let the Zaras kill him and the entire Barcid Party and enslave all the people of Hispania if it meant preventing the death and destruction of war. Seeing Tarte about to be burnt at the stake changes his mind.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Hamil against Izebel and the Divine Empire. Subverted at Eburon. Hamil pretends to fly into one on seeing Izebel at the beginning of the assault on the bridge of Eburon, but is actually just buying time for the rest of the assault team to destroy the bridge. Once the destruction of the bridge is certain, he almost flies into a real one.
  • Ruling Couple: Hamil and Tarte.
  • Running Gag:
    • Dion's unsuccessful attempts at becoming popular with the ladies.
    • Daphnis' offhand Ho Yay remarks and Elissa's reactions to them.
    • Kleito and Tarte arguing over getting worshipers, usually Hamil. Doubles as Chekhov's Gag.
    • Simon making a joke, and getting threatened with burning his staff.
  • Shown Their Work: Surpassing the first game. The amount of details corresponding to the Classical period, the Punic Wars, and Phoenician mythology is amazing.
    • The Hero is based on Hannibal Barca but named after his father. Monomachus is a real life Carthaginian general under Hannibal. Enneads is a book on Neoplatonism. Dion is short for Diogenes. Charis is one of the three Graces. Laelius is general and friend of Scipio Africanus. Aemilia is Scipio's wife. Astarte, Tanit, Eshmun and Melqart are all real Phoenician gods, and were really at one time thought of as two gods, Tanit-Astarte and Eshmun-Melqart.
    • Tamar is roughly Toletum. Avron is a mix of Hibera and Emporion. Tartessos, a mix of Atlantis and Tenochtitlan, is named after one of the earliest Phoenician colonies on the Iberian Peninsula. Cemenelum, part of modern Nice, was the capital of the Roman province of Alpes Maritimae. Imperial Capital Alba Longa, based on Ancient Rome, is named after the real city state that founded the Latin League and was a major rival to Rome. Carthage appears with its Phoenician name of Qart Hadast.
  • Sacrificed Basic Skill for Awesome Training: As a goddess who haven't appeared on earth for a long time, Tarte needs to be taught what hunger is and how to eat.
  • Vigilante Man: Hamil, before the start of the game. Particularly brutal soldiers and unsavory tax collectors who came to his town had a tendency to "disappear." He covers his tracks thoroughly enough (waiting until they're in the vicinity of another town, constructing plausible causes of death) that even after his Obfuscating Stupidity drops, only Dion thinks to connect it to Hamil. In fact, he covers it up so well that a statistician sees the corresponding improvement in conditions without a clear cause and intuits the presence of such a vigilante, which is enough to nearly thwart Hamil's surprise attack on the bridge at Eburon.
  • War Elephants: Noa the elephant. Tarte and Charis can ride it in battle. Also the other elven elephants Tarte summons as part of The Cavalry.
  • War Is Hell: Stated often and sometimes shown. Hamil considered accepting the enslaving of his entire people to avoid war. Saul was willing to let slide agents from The Empire buying slaves and dead bodies to prevent war. Until Hamil points out to him that he's only prolonging the inevitable, which he knew, and said agents took Artio which would cause war to errupt anyway.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Abraxas at first. He quickly realizes he was wrong and Simon was right, but having gone too far in his plan, and combined with Demonic Possession, he turned down a very ugly road.
  • Workaholic: Amelia's group of bureaucrats. Epilogue reveals, as expected, she herself is one.
  • Wounded Gazelle Gambit: Improvised to great effects, by Redshirt Army no less, with Enneads and Monomachus.
  • Writer on Board: Aemilia and Hamil's short discussion on the social causes of The Empire's decline.
  • Xanatos Gambit: Izebel pulls a simple one when she intercepts the party on the high seas. She has the Kraken attack the rear of the ship. She and her soldiers then board from the front. If the party did not realized this trap and moved to the rear to deal with the Krakken, they get attacked from the rear and defeated. If they realized this trap and did not move, the entire party would need to be at the ship's front to deal with her superior forces, leaving the Krakken free to sink the ship.
  • You Killed My Father: Hamil to Izebel. It turns out she didn't. Hasdrubal took his own life. But before doing so he ordered Izebel to pretend as though she did it.
  • You Shall Not Pass!: Monomachus stays behind as the party prepare to teleport out of Tartessos to buy time for their teleportation.